Catholic Faith · Emily (Me) · God's Plan · Health · LadyEm · Self Improvement

Season of Me? Building a Relationship With God…

Dear Ones,

It has nearly been four months since I’ve blogged…

Currently, I am participating in Mary Lenaburg’s 30 Day Encouragement Challenge “You Can Do Hard Things”. And I write this to her in the comment of her Day 4 video… “I’m walking out of a season where I simply was tired of being bold/courageous. Tired of putting a smile on my face and pretending all was well. Just exhausted with the hard things in life. This is truly a time of refocus for me and I really appreciate that you have put this together. Thank you again Mary!”

The funny thing is, in my mind I had been dealing very well with everything life tossed me. And, as a Catholic, I had been performing well. Do you say performing? Yes after much thought, even though the love for God is there I was somewhat going through the motions. I told myself I had to do certain things in order to be a good Catholic. But I was not taking care of myself.

I gave up my career many years ago to care for our youngest child who is autistic and anxiety ridden. And I even began to speak words of anger to him and my husband as well… As I became increasingly resentful that all of my life goals and dreams seemed to be disappearing. Embarrassingly, The evil one was starting to creep into my mind and tell me lies.

No matter what I did, I could not shake the overwhelming feeling that I was never gonna be good enough for God. And I think somewhere along the way I stopped believing that He cared. Even as I thought children that God was love… I did not believe that He loved me. Because I have been through so much I allowed the insecurities of my past to convince me that I was not a good mom or wife or even a good person…

In the sessions that we have with Ms. Mary, she asks us basically to determine the HARD thing we need to overcome. Mine is learning to love myself; To Deem myself worthy, And to know deeply the love of God again. In order to do this I have to allow Him to love me and build my relationship with Him. In order to be a better mother and wife and friend… I need to relearn how to love myself. It’s weird to say out loud it almost 58 years old that I will battle the demons of my past and my present… But I intend to do so with the full armor of God.

If I’m not here, lol it’s not because I don’t have a lot to say or things that I want to write about. I just need to make sure that I’m writing in the correct spirit. I don’t want to be a negative person. The anxieties and stresses of life have caused me to not be well physically and mentally. And I need to concentrate on regrouping for me and my family.

I want my legacy to be one of ministry, not misery. I want to impart the right wisdom from growth. I need to listen for God’s plan in my life. And I’m excited to see what He needs me to do for Him.

I don’t say these things to worry you. Honestly I say these things to encourage you because I know that I’m not the only one who is walked through childhood abuse, incest, self degrading behaviors, loss of children, and this overwhelming need for life to look perfect for others… P.S. – it’s not. Lol

I’ll be fine. There is much good in life. And I will be back at least weekly. I have some work to do in order to get my mind right…and I will be praying for you.

Thanks for understanding.

Love & Hugs,
LadyEm

Angels · Catholic Faith · Counting Blessings · Currently · Davis Family · Faith · Family · Italy · LadyEm

Harm vs. Inconvenience

Unsure whose image this is.

Dear Ones,

As I was reading my Magnificat this morning, it occurred to me that there’s a difference between being protected from harm, and walking through inconveniences. So in my human mind I get the two mixed up. I say to myself, “why would God let this happen? Why would God allow me and the people I love to be harmed in this way?!”

Here are the first few passages I read… and literally stopped to post, after being thoroughly convicted

“Exodus 14:19 — The angel of God, who had been leading Israel’s camp, now moved and went around behind them.

God’s providence is powerful indeed. Christ, who has led the way through death to life, now shield us from all harm and feeds us with the Bread of life, Himself, as He continues to lead us in our own exodus from slavery to the promised land of eternal freedom.

Psalm 34:1-9  — 1 I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth. 2 My soul makes its boast in the Lord; let the humble hear and be glad. 3 O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together. 4 I sought the Lord, and he answered me, and delivered me from all my fears.5 Look to him, and be radiant; so your[a] faces shall never be ashamed. 6 This poor soul cried, and was heard by the Lord, and was saved from every trouble. 7 The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them. 8 O taste and see that the Lord is good; happy are those who take refuge in him. 9 O fear the Lord, you his holy ones, for those who fear him have no want.”

In the italicized portion above, you see that it says Christ shields us from harm. And as I was reading it I thought to myself, “duh, harm… Not inconveniences.” You may be asking yourself why this is a revelation to me. And if I’m being honest with you I don’t know why it’s still Is. I guess because I’ve been through so much in my life that the battle in my mind is sometimes so overwhelming that I need the constant reminder. And so when I feel strongly convicted I share… and I guess that’s what God wants me to do.

Lately I’ve been really battling depression over the fact that here in Italy were still locked down, my friends are leaving, and I can’t find a job. I think the real truth is that we all become cheerleaders for other people and we forget to tell ourselves the same thing. One would think if you could articulate to someone else that things are going to be OK he would buy it yourself but that is apparently not always the case. When things are terribly out of my control in life, because of some of the damage that was done In my childhood, it is, simply put, extremely difficult, to re-route my thought process away from the negative.

This mild depression is compounded by the fact that my husband wants to stay here for a few years, because he does have a very good job, and our youngest goes to college in the fall of 2022. To say that I dislike Italy and being this far from family is an understatement. There are some very good things here. Of course we always look for the good. But it’s lonely in a way that I can’t describe well without sounding crazy. We will be going to Texas for about six weeks this summer, spend some time with family, look at a few colleges, and visit with friends. It will be a battle for me to get back on the plane and come back over here.

I know that I have walked through worse… And that God has brought me to the other side. I just pray that by my example, on my good days, that I can make a difference in someone else’s life. I am a worrier. It’s one of my biggest sins. I know that things are gonna turn out OK because God has always provided for us… But I can’t seem to stop my mind from going to dark places on occasion.

I am stronger than I sound in this post, for sure. And I do praise God in good and bad times. Let me end this post with a positive… 10 days ago our washing machine broke down. The water is so hard here it had rusted the whole front of it in 2 1/2 years. Luckily the Navy exchange had two washing machines one being a Toploader. This is important because the rust on the front loader was caused by taking the clothes out of the washer and the hard, unfiltered water. Long story short I didn’t have a washing machine for a few days and I did lament spending the money on a new one. But the good news is folks we had the money to buy a new one and it is a superior washing machine. It is a 220 V machine for Europe, However the instructions are written in English. Her 2 1/2 years I’ve use the machine or the instructions are written in Italian and I kid you not I guessed which Load I should use. Haha

Check out the pictures of the old one.

It may sound like a lame example… But truly I believe God helped us choose a better washer for our family. It’s been a dream actually.

So you see you sometimes inconveniences turn out for the best. And even walking through harm, on occasion can mold you into a person that fits more with what God wants you to be. We cannot drink the water in our homes, but we can afford bottled water. I cannot physically reach my friends and family in the states but I can speak to them and see them over the Internet. There are so many things that can feel harmful. But there are are truly many more blessings in life. It’s about getting your mind straight… Let’s help each other do that!

Being far away is inconvenient. Many things about life are inconvenient. But we are not in harm’s way! Praise God!

Pray for me! I’m praying for y’all too!

Hugs and Blessings,
LadyEm

Catholic Faith · Davis Family · Family · Health · Italy · Lent · Marque

ALL CLEAR – We Can Finally Breath…

Dear Ones,

Did you ever have a time in your life where you just couldn’t breath right? I feel like the past year has especially been that way for us.

My husband had surgery to remove colon cancer one year, one month, and five days ago – but who’s counting. It has not been easy. But today y’all, today – we got the ALL CLEAR.

Yep, after a morning of beautiful outfits and needle sticks from hell – three tries on the IV y’all, but I digress… the surgeon came in with what I can only describe as, and you’ll have to take my word for it, beautiful pics of a pristine colon. You’re welcome!

Y’all when we walk in this Navy hospital, they know us. That is and isn’t a good thing. “M’am, you’ve been here before haven’t you?” “M’am how’s your husband (or son)?” My husband still holds the record for most days in the hospital on the base, and longest surgery…

This past year in lockdown has been particularly hard on us…. but we are bouncing back and we are hopeful… Admittedly I am great at lifting others up, but I really need to be better about doing that for myself.

We can breathe. We are so relieved. And we are clinging to the words of Our Lord….

I thought I’d share with you our decor this year. We don’t have a lot of extra room AND we have three animals (and a teen) haha. So – we are creative with it.

This year, once again, we are locked down for Holy Week. Just as we recently found a Latin Mass Parish to attend, and then the lockdown came. Keep in mind, here in Italy, we can not leave our yards without permission except to walk a dog or exercise. And so – we are thankful to at least have a Parish on base where we can go and be with OUR LORD!

The picture above is on my buffet in the dining room. The Olive Branches is what our Parish gave us this year instead of Palms. This is the tradition in Italy. The crosses are from Hobby Lobby and we’ve had them for years… and the cloche is probably from there too.

I hope wherever you are, you have a great Holy Week. More soon.

Love and Hugs.
LadyEm

Blessed Mary · Catholic Faith · Catholic Mom · Emily (Me) · Our Lady's Image · Saints

Celebrating International Women’s Day!

Dear Ones,

If you know me, you know I love celebrations. But, I have to be honest, I grow tired of special days set aside for this and that. In my house we celebrate each other daily – I mean – maybe not with presents, etc. I hope you know what I mean. Sometimes my attitude about things doesn’t mesh with societal norms – but I have to be honest – I’m ok with that.

So many beautiful women have influenced my life. Truly – from my Grandmothers, Aunts, Cousins, Sisters,,, to many friends and acquaintances that have become family-like. I’m so thankful for each and every lesson, example, piece of advise, every book you have written, every way you have inspired me, etc. I just want to make sure you know I’m thankful for you all EVERY DAY, not just today.

With that, I actually did a google search wondering if others felt the same. There are so many reasons that the Catholic Church/Faith fits me so well. Check this out:

While the world may celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8th every year, these saints prove that the Catholic Church celebrates women’s day every day of the year.  Check out these women and how they impacted the Church! 25 Women Saints Who Prove Every Day is Women’s Day!

Thank you EPIC PEW!!!

I’m not going to pontificate about being a woman/mom means to me… instead, I am going to leave you with a few quotes from my favorite Female Saints:

And Let us not forget our Blessed Mother, who taught us to Trust God, Say YES to Him, gave birth to Our Lord! There could be no better example on International Woman’s Day than a young, innocent girl who risked it all and gave us EVERYTHING! Amen!

Happy International Woman’s Day. Wherever you are – be blessed. If you have influenced me and I love you for it – I’m sure you know.

Love, Hugs, & Blessings,
LadyEm

#ginaKdesigns · #LadyEmCrafts · Catholic Faith · Davis Family · Italy · Lent · StampinUp · SweetnSassy · Valentines

Shrove Tuesday And A Couple Valentine’s Cards

Dear Readers…

How I wish I was a more regular blogger. I will make attempts to do better, and stop apologizing. Because I’m bored with the apologies. HA I hope you are all well. Life is life… Sigh. Hugs.

Today is Shrove Tuesday. Do you know what Shrove Tuesday is? Fat Tuesday, Shrove Tuesday, Mardi Gras – they all mean the same thing. Today – historically – WAAAAY BACK. People would empty their pantries of eggs, milk, and sugar so that they could fast for 40 days of Lent. In my house, one wants pancakes and the other wants waffles. I’m low carb, so I will figure it out. LOL Breakfast for dinner is NEVER a bad thing though. Information about traditions below.

Tomorrow – we kick of Lent with Ash Wednesday – this year we will be sprinkled with Ashes instead of receiving on the forehead. UGH But we know everyone is doing the best we all can. Of course, NOTHING I ordered for Lent is here. But never fear, let me give you a list of Free or Inexpensive Lenten Printables. This way, if you are in the same predicament with mail (with all the weather in the states, the delays must be similar), you can still get your Lenten Plan together. Here are a few things I love:

And perhaps my Favorite – Prompt Me To Pray Through Lent via Monica at Arma Dei. She has so many Lenten Printables from her Lenten Pack of Prayers to a Lenten Quest to her Stations of the Cross. You really should check out her site!

Plus I have a couple books here with readings and devotions for Lent. I’m disappointed that the NEW hasn’t shown up, but it’s ALL GOOD! Catholics are versatile and able to overcome. LOL

Now – I think it’s ok to show you a few Valentine’s Cards I sent to lovely folks I know.

Card #1 – Card Recipe
Stamps: Sweet ‘N Sassy Stamps: Some Buggy Loves You, Texture Tiles 5 and Texture Tiles 7
Paper: PaperTreyInk, StampinUp, and Scrap DP
Ink: Jet Black Amalgam Ink-Gina K Designs, Various Copic and Spectrum Noir Yellow Sparkle Pen.
Embellishments: Blue Scrap Ribbon

Directions: I have bins with scrap paper and precut layers in it. I stamped the X’s and O’s on a piece of chartreuse paper (PTI) and I believe the DP with dragonflies is from StampinUp. I just layered it and tossed some ribbon on. I wish I’d have taken a picture of the inside, because I stamped Happy Valentine’s Day, and Somebuggy loves you! Put it all together with tape adhesive and dimensionals.

Card #2 – Card Recipe
Stamps: Sweet n Sassy Stamps: Kitty Image – from Lots of Love, Sentiment from Valentine Critters, and Background from Rose Background.
Paper: PaperTreyInk and StampinUp
Ink: Jet Black Amalgam Ink from Gina K. Various Copic Markers, and Wink of Stella
Embellishments: Pink Scrap Ribbon.

Directions: I cut and layed out layers from scrap paper. I stamped the Rose background and colored with comic markers… then I used the teeny hearts from the Sweet n’ Sassy Donut Worry set and stamped in various colors with SU Ink, and used a water brush to move the ink around to give a little dimension. I stamped the kitty and colored her with Copics, then put it all together with tape adhesives and dimensionals. Scrap ribbon from my bin. Easy Peasy.

Card #3 – Card Recipe
Stamps: Sweet n’ Sassy Stamp Sets: You & Me, Donut Worry, and Texture Tiles 9
Paper: PaperTreyInk and StampinUp
Ink: Jet Black Amalgam Ink from Gina K, Various Copic Markers, and Stampin UP Inks: Baked Brown Sugar, Early Espresso and Soft Suede.
Embellishments: Red scrap ribbon.

Directions: I stamped the coffee words image on a scrap of ballerina pink paper, and stamped the coffee and donuts in various browns, and sprayed with water for a spill effect. I colored the main image with copic markers and used a piece of pink/red gingham paper for a layer. Then I added the red ribbon and put it all together with tape adhesive and dimensionals.

It was one of my funnest evenings in a long time. Music, mess and fun! I get messy in my craft room. I hope to do it more. Anyway – I got them into Military Post, but who knows when the receivers will receive.

We’ll talk about Lent tomorrow. Ash Wednesday Y’all.

Happy rest of your Tuesday.

Love, Hugs & Blessings,
LadyEm